S. L. Faisal

Librarian, Blogger, Dreamer…

Social Media for Libraries

social-media“Social Media” is one of the most widely used terms of today. What does it mean? Does it hold any connection with the real society and the media that we used to experience? As library professionals, who constantly deal with the society and engage with the media, what is our stake in this ever expanding zone of possibilities, which comes up with new ‘things’ every day? Before trying to answer these questions, we should accept the fact that the impact, or in another way the intrusion, of social media on our professional and personal life is now far reaching and unquestionable. With an active monthly user base of 1.35 billion (as of the third quarter of 2014), Facebook, one of the most popular Social Media application, rules the social networking scenario, where almost one third of the total number of the people of the world, of course those having the internet accessibility, communicate each other and document their life using text, images, links and videos. Besides Facebook, there are hundreds of other social media tools or technologies those are literally embedded in one’s life today, and accessed through a number of devices including the fast spreading mobile/cellular phones. According to the May 2014 ICT Facts and Figures Statistical Report (2014), by the International Telecommunications Union, mobile-cellular subscriptions worldwide will reach almost 7 billion and the number of mobile-broadband subscriptions will reach 2.3 Billion globally by the end of 2014. It is clear that human being is now more and more connected and capable of accessing and sharing information as and when he/she wishes. And social media is the platform which spearheaded this change. Keeping aside the repeated allegations of causing a decrease in real-life interactions, the use of social media tools among the net-generation of people are growing day by day. They depend hugely on social media to accomplish their personal and professional tasks. To reach out to these ‘customers’ at their own place and time, commercial organizations are devising their own social media strategies. Perhaps, libraries show more concern about losing customers and so bravely enter into the social media scene and redesign their services accordingly. So, if you think that your library will stand out of this trend, or else, you as a librarian will defend the invasion of this web of ‘things’, no one can help you. In the following sections of this paper, we will discuss about social media in general and learn about some of the most useful social media tools or technologies those we can use in our libraries. Introduction to article published as part of the training material prepared for the Five Day Training programme organized by RIE, Mysore for DIET/SCERT Librariesns (19-23 January 2015)

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This entry was posted on February 17, 2015 by in Research papers and tagged , , , .

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